New Brew News: Fyne Ales X Brewdog Glasgow Shakers In Paris (& Revival Juice!)

By Iain Smith

We’re tight with the good people from Brewdog Bar Glasgow, we go way back, all the way back to October 2013 when we were invited by them to work together on the first of Brewdog’s Collabfest events in 2013to produce the acclaimed 48 Miles Later chilli black IPA.

So when they approached us with an idea to brew a special beer to mark their sixth birthday, we were more than happy to oblige. We worked with the team from down the road to create Shakers In Paris, a 6%, ultra-small-batch French Martini-inspired IPA brewed with pineapple, raspberries, oats and lactose.

We were delighted to have Ross and Leanne from the bar join us for the brew day; both first-time visitors to the brewery, they weren’t afraid to get stuck in, helping with every stage of the brew, starting with chopping a whole heap of fresh pineapples.

 

Of course, to sure we were going the right way with the brew, we had to knock up a round of French martinis during the boil and compare tasting notes. At 11am. Serious brewing business.

As is tradition, brewing guests are required to get their hands well and truly dirty by cleaning out the mash tun. With the size of our original brew kit, around 6% is the highest ABV we can squeeze out of a brew, so this particular clean-out took a fair bit of work.

We also had time to take the guys on a quick guided tour of the glen, giving the guys a run through the history of the brewery, the estate and how the land was being used today outside of brewing activities.

Shakers In Paris, whose name is inspired by both the cocktail origin of the beer and the hiphop playlist that soundtracked the brew day, has turned out really well - the combination of the oats in the grist and dissolved lactose capture the creamy-sweet vibe of the cocktail really well, with of course plenty of juiciness from the raspberry and pineapple additions. As it is an IPA, we've made sure there's a hop backbone behind all the fruitness, with Sorachi Ace and Summit used to ensure a satisfyingly clean finish.

We’re super excited for the beer’s launch on Friday 21 July as part of the bar’s birthday celebrations We. Are. Six. We hope to see you there, but if you can’t make it down, don’t worry as the beer will also be popping up at the following Brewdog bars in the coming weeks (with possibly a few more to be added): Stirling, Aberdeen Castlegate, Dundee, Glasgow Doghouse, Camden, Soho, Clerkenwell.

 

But wait, there’s more. The base beer from the batch was actually split into two separate brews – one infused with pineapple and raspberry for the Brewdog-exclusive brew, and the other given a week on a mixture of lemons, limes and oranges to become Revival Juice! – a citrus oatmeal IPA with a refreshingly sour edge that conjures up ideas of a breakfast parfait. Revival is going to be more widely available than its sister beer, so expect to see it around as well as popping up in some Brewdog bars.

Keep up to date with the latest by following Fyne Ales and Brewdog Glasgow on social and be sure to check out the full gallery from the brew day – Fyne Ales X Brewdog Glasgow – Shakers In Paris Brew Day.

Facebook: Fyne Ales / Brewdog Glasgow

Instagram: Fyne Ales / Brewdog Glasgow

Twitter: Fyne Ales / Brewdog Glasgow

New Brew News: Original Brewery, Kurgan & Atlantic Boulevard

By Iain Smith

We recently announced on social media that, after a few months of renovation works, the original Fyne Ales brewery was back in action.

The plan was always to keep the original brewery as an additional, supplementary 10BBL facility once the new 40BBL brewery was complete, but getting it working efficiently was proving to be a challenge, as the equipment aged and the building itself began to show signs of the thirteen years of hard graft it had put in brewing our award-winning beers.

In early 2017, we decided to close the original brewery down to make some much-needed improvements. The first renovation was replacing the original 2001 boiler with a steam-link to the one powering the new brewery. The second was to improve drainage – the building’s original drains had been installed during construction to support the building’s original purpose of being a dairy, so it was high time to get a better solution dug into the floor.

The good news is that these renovations are now complete and we’ve been brewing like crazy on the old kit, knocking out more beer than we can cope with (literally, one of the FVs was a right state last week as fermentation carried about a fifth of the beer over the top).

The first two beers out of the brewery are launching this and next week!

First up, Kurgan, a 4.4% traditional amber with a hoppy, bitter finish. We’ve had increasing demand for old-school styles in keg, so we took the base recipe of our award-winning cask ale Highlander, brought the ABV to a slightly more sessionable level and played with the hop additions to create a keg rival to our first ever beer. There can be only one. But probably not because we’ll keep making both for a while if you like Kurgan. Let us know.

Secondly, the first small-batch cask special from the original brewery in quite some time and the return of our series of American-style IPAs on cask. The Boulevard series will see the return of Sunryes (Rye IPA), Long Beech (Smoked) as well as a couple of new entries including the first beer – Atlantic Boulevard! The 5.6% Atlantic uses hops from both sides of the ocean in a trans-atlantic showdown, with the British bruiser East Kent Goldings facing off against the formidable tag-team of Simcoe and Warrior in a handicap match for the ages (and happy stomachs).

There’s a lot more beer on the way out of the original brewery (*cough*BrewdogGlasgowBirthdayBeer*cough), so keep an eye on the blog and social media for the latest.

 

P.S Our pals at Wild Beer Co rebrewed Cool As A Cucumber and it's tasting better than the first time round. Go find it.

Save The Date: FyneFest 2018 Announced!

By Iain Smith

Just one month on from the biggest and best FyneFest yet, and we’re already planning to do it all over again in 2018!

FyneFest 2018 will be held across the weekend of 01-03 June 2018, with availability for camping until 04 June.

Since 2010, Fyne Ales has invited people to join us in our wee corner of north west Scotland for a weekend of the best beer, food and music we can muster. From humble beginnings, with 250 people chilling in the courtyard and sipping on Fyne Ales brews, to the biggest FyneFest yet in 2017 with over ten times the number of people and beers from over fifty different breweries from around Europe, FyneFest has grown and grown. 

We're excited about the ideas for improvements we have for FyneFest 2018, and exciting about hosting you again next June, so get the dates in your diaries, on your calendars and firmly imprinted in your minds because we can't wait to see you back in the glen.

Earlybird tickets will be available from November, with full price tickets on sale shortly aterwards!

Stay up to date with the latest news via Fyne Ales on social media:

 

New Brew News: Summer Sessions 2017 & Summer Dawn

By Iain Smith

When we designed our state-of-the-art brewery a few years ago, we had hops on our mind. We wanted equipment which would allow us to get the very most out of the flavourful additions which make beer so varied and exciting. To this end, we installed a full-size hopback, perfect for infusing beer with bright, hoppy flavours during the brew.

The hopback has served us well, our champion beer Jarl is tasting better than it ever has, showcasing US hop citra at its best, and the rest of our range has been consistent improving over the last couple of years. We’re big believers that cask beer can be as good a showcase of hops as keg beers are.

We decided to try and prove this with a series of summer specials that are all about packing low ABV beers full of flavour – introducing the Fyne Ales Summer Sessions 2017.

Each month this summer we’re brewing a 3.5% pale(ish) beer, destined for casks, each with a mix of four different hops, each designed to be clean, refreshing and bursting with fresh hop flavours.

 

First up is Summer Dawn, a golden ale brewed using a hint of rye malt and oat malt to give a touch of colour and depth of flavour than ultra-pale ales. The hops we’ve chosen to showcase are an international affair, combining British Brewers Gold with a pair of American hops Apollo and  Centennial and completing the line-up with one of our current favourites, the Japanese Sorachi Ace.

On the nose you’ll find sweet citrus notes similar to candied oranges; taste is all tangerine and peach flavours before a dry, slightly bitter finish from the Sorachi.

We’d love to hear what you think of each of this year’s Summer Sessions – Summer Skies will be brewed in July and arrive in pubs early August, while Summer Dusk will be brewed in August for early-September drinking!
 

Fyne Ales awarded Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence 2017

By Iain Smith

Let us start with a huge, huge thank you to everyone who has visited the brewery and taken time to leave a review online - good or bad, it’s great for us to get feedback on what we do in our wee corner of Argyll!

We keep an eye on all customer reviews of the brewery, and one of the platforms we check regularly for your feedback is Trip Advisor. It’s arguably the biggest user-review site in the UK, and one of the most popular in the world, which makes winning a Certificate of Excellence award this year, for the fourth consecutive year because of your reviews a huge honour for us.

Our team strives to offer everyone who visits the brewery a great experience, whether for a tour and tasting or simply picking up a case of beer – if you’ve recently visited and want to leave us your thoughts on Facebook, Google or Trip Advisor, we’d love to hear what you think.

And if you haven’t made the trip up to the glen yet, check out the website for more information on what we offer, and if you’ve got any questions, give us a shout on Facebook, Twitter or drop us an email via enquiries[at]fyneales.com.

Now Hiring: West of Scotland Sales Manager

By Iain Smith

Fyne Ales is looking for a passionate, knowledgeable and experienced salesperson to join our small sales team representing the West coast of Scotland and north-west England.  This is a role for someone who loves great beer and wants to continue developing their sales career in sales while deepening their beer knowledge.

Working with independent on and off-trade customers, the role will involve account management, pricing negotiation, strategic planning, new customer development and budget control as we seek to continue developing the presence of our award-winning beers in Argyll, Glasgow and beyond.

Candidates should be confident in managing a large product range with a diverse range of customers as Fyne Ales continues to expand its reach into new markets and sectors. Good time-management and people skills are desired to ensure all customer accounts are maintained with positive relationships.

There will also be the opportunity to work with Fyne Ales’ Marketing Manager to develop events, materials and incentives to support sales within the specified region.

We are excited to be welcoming someone to our small team – if you’re passionate about beer, sales and looking for a new challenge, we’d love to hear from you. The role will offer a competitive salary plus benefits; if you’re interested, please download the full job description and email a CV and cover letter to: work[at]fyneales.com.

Download full job spec: here.
 

Closing date (extended): 31 July 2017.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

 

Fyne Ales named finalist for nine Scottish Beer Awards including Brewery Of The Year

By Iain Smith

Fyne Ales is delighted to have been named a finalist for the prestigious Brewery Of The Year award at this year’s Scottish Beer Awards. The nomination comes alongside seven Fyne Ales beers picking up finalist spots in taste award categories and an additional business performance award nomination for Brewery Destination Of The Year.

Among the award’s taste categories, Fyne Ales’ seven finalist beers are: Maverick (Amber or Dark), Mills & Hills (Amplified), Highlander (British), Jarl (Pale), Ich Bin Ein Berryliner (Sour) and two Farmhouse Project beers: The Merchant and The Witch (Fruit-Forward).

“It’s wonderful to be named finalist across both taste and business categories at this year’s Scottish Business Awards,” commented Fyne Ales Managing Director, Jamie Delap. “These awards really showcase what an amazing, thriving craft beer industry we have in Scotland, and we’re excited to be alongside some brilliant breweries in competing for these awards.”

The awards, sponsored by ALDI, were first held in 2016 in order to recognise the best of Scottish brewing, and are judged by an panel of 27 of Scotland’s foremost beer experts. The winners will be announced on 28 September 2017.
 

Devine

New Brew News – Gengy’s Drop

By Iain Smith

 

Launching at FyneFest 2017, a brand new, cask exclusive, ultra-pale ale - Gengy’s Drop!

Designed and brewed by Erasmus participant, Davide Gardosi to mark the end of his time with Fyne Ales, Gengy’s Drop is an supremely thirst-quenching light ale packed with Sorachi Ace alongside Citra and Nelson Sauvin.

The beer’s unique name comes from Davide’s nickname, Gengy, which in turn comes from the Italian word for ‘gums’. Davide earned the nickname for being the smile-iest person in Italy, something that the Fyne Ales team have enjoyed during the last few months working alongside Gengy.

In further tribute to Gengy’s great loves of hops and football, the beer’s clip is designed using the colours of AS Roma.

Check out the beer at FyneFest 2017 and out in the wild soon after!

New Brew News: Fyne Ales Workbench IPA Project & First Draft

By Iain Smith

Sanda Blonde, Fyne Ales core IPA, has been picking-up plaudits ever-since we first brewed it in 2013. Our pale, Nelson Sauvin-centred IPA has proudly been our representation of what a modern, British IPA should be for four years, but four years is a long time in the craft beer industry. So, in line with our continuous efforts to review and improve on our beers, it’s time for something new.

Introducing the Workbench IPA Project, and the first beer in a new series of hop-forward, prototype beers: Workbench IPA – First Draft.

Workbench IPA Project began with a collective blind tasting of Sanda Blonde alongside beers we considered some of the best examples of IPAs being brewed around the UK. Beers were evaluated not only on preference, but also on their flavour profiles, with the team contributing to a collective discussion about what they look for in an IPA between 5-6% ABV. While Sanda Blonde fared well in the blind taste-test scoring, finishing third out of seven beers, it fell well behind the two leaders.

The consensus of opinion was that while Sanda Blonde was clean, refreshing and highly drinkable, it wasn’t forward enough with the bright fruity and floral hop flavours that modern drinkers have come to demand in their IPAs. It ticked the boxes for bitterness and resinous levels, but the leaders in the style offered more distinct hop-characters and therefore, more balance.

But how could we bring that balance to our core-range IPA? We decided to find out with a series of prototype IPAs exploring hop-infusion methods and combinations, ideas taken from the brewers’ workbench, brought to life as small-batch brews.

Workbench IPA – First Draft is the first beer in this small-batch series, and possibly the most straight-forward when it comes to trying to achieve our goal. How do we get more fruity and floral hop flavours into an IPA? Use fruity and floral hops, and lots of them. Being one of the only breweries in the UK with a fullsize hopback, we are well-equipped for, and practiced in using whole-leaf hops to produce fruity and floral flavours, and for First Draft, we use two of our favourite hops, Citra and Nelson Sauvin for base flavours. To push the hop flavours even further, First Draft also features the biggest dry-hopping of any beer Fyne Ales has ever produced, using Mosaic and Summit T90 hop pellets to give the beer sweet stone-fruit flavours with a pink-grapefruit and peppery grass finish.

In the spirit of doing things differently, we also took different approaches to bottling and branding the prototype beers. We commissioned artist Kev Grey to create a hand-drawn illustration for a single-wrap label design, and we bottle-conditioned the beer in order to preserve as much of the fresh hop flavours as possible. This is more than just a new beer, this is a new approach, and we’re very, very excited about hearing what you think of it.

We need your help. We want to know what you like about each draft and what you like less, we want your feedback to help inform the recipes for future prototypes, with the ultimate goal of creating a new, core-range IPA that will replace Sanda Blonde. So, when First Draft debuts on keg at FyneFest 2017, or when you pick up a bottle the week after, fire up your phone, and send us a tweet (#FyneWorkbench), a Facebook message or check First Draft in on Untappd or Ratebeer so we can see what you think about the beer, and help us make Second Draft even better than the first.

For those who love Sanda Blonde (which includes quite a few of us), fear not, we’re keeping the bottles around until the Workbench IPA Project is complete and at that point, we’ll have something even better ready to take its place!

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